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The King of Softball and His Gang of Apologists

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October 18, 2005

It is no wonder that people today have no idea what is really going on in this country anymore. The deregulation of media has allowed the skewing of reality in favor of propaganda. If there is something threatening the status quo, simply prop up the lies with fake news shows and confuse the masses. Tonight on Hardball with Chris Matthews we saw front and center why media is no longer trustworthy and why TV and print news are losing the war every day to Internet news.

Tonight on Hardball we saw again that modern day media is nothing more than a propaganda machine for the administration. As the rumors begin to swirl that Patrick Fitzgerald is targeting the Vice President, Chris Matthews used his opening sequence to have two Dick Cheney apologists come on for 15 minutes to assure us that Dick Cheney could never have crossed the line into lawbreaking or immorality. I kid you not. The man who never divested himself of Halliburton stock and has made his friends billions of dollars off the blood of American soldiers was being touted as the next catholic saint.

The segment had David Gergen and Patrick Buchanan and both of them supported the exact same position. They spent the 15 minutes tripping over themselves, insisting that Dick Cheney spends his afternoons helping old ladies cross the street and could not possibly have been involved in anything illegal or immoral. Please. Unfortunately they had no perspective other than this and distorted quite a few facts along the way.

It was Dick Cheney's office that sent Joe Wilson to the Niger. This is a fact, period, no longer under any question. The apologists contorted the truth as best they could to make it sound that Cheney could not have possibly known that it was his office that asked for someone to go to Niger and verify the story about yellowcake. Bunk. I do not want to hear anymore about plausible deniability. It is always the front line guys who take the fall for the real criminals and hopefully Patrick Fitzgerald will have the guts to not let someone take the fall for a Cheney, if he is indeed guilty. Additionally, to hear Gergen and Buchanan tell it, it is no big deal if someone like a Cheney said to his staff "someone please shut this Wilson guy up, he can undermine the president." Excuse me??? There absolutely is criminal activity there, it is called conspiracy. What does "shut that Wilson guy up" mean? The fact is that Cheney himself was deeply involved in pushing the false intelligence that sent us into war to begin with and Wilson threatened to undermine all of that. If Cheney then in turn said to his staff to "shut Wilson up" and his staff, such as Libby, chose to leak the identity of his wife then Dick Cheney is most certainly guilty, period.

The offensive thing though is that this "news" program was used to solely prop up the vice president. Chris Matthews at every turn tried to minimize the Cheney angle, deflected blame, and tried his level best to not present news, but to play whiffle ball with what could be the impending indictment of a sitting vice president. He allowed such nonsense as Buchanan referring to Wilson as a "Clintonian", a ridiculous charge considering the work that Joe Wilson did for Bush Sr. in Iraq in the early 1990's.
The next segment had on Andrea Mitchell and Jim Vandehei, two more people who would not represent the other side. Matthews allowed Mitchell to continue the lie that Joe Wilson misrepresented the role of Cheney's office in the trip to Niger. This is simply untrue. Wilson correctly stated that it was inquiries from the vice president's office that prompted the Niger trip, period. Lastly, Matthews was overly concerned that Fitzgerald would name Cheney as an "unindicted co-conspirator" saying the special prosecutor should either "indict or shut the hell up." Thanks Chris, but maybe you should take your own advice. There has been two years and plenty of the people's money involved in this investigation and the American people absolutely need to know the entire truth, not just what a bought and sold pseudo-journalist thinks should be revealed.

All one needs to know about the inherent bias of Chris Matthews was his use tonight of Stephen Hayes who in Matthews words wrote "one of the best articles about this story." Stephen Hayes is not a journalist; he is a propagandist who writes for the Weekly Standard, which is run by the same group of neocons that sold us this whole war to begin with. Are you kidding me? Stephen Hayes is the same guy who was busted for printing the original Mohammed Atta lies that the administration clung to, in order to erroneously tie Saddam to al Qaeda.

So the third segment has a known fake journalist who has been exposed as selling us lies to further the neocon war agenda and Howard Fineman of Newsweek. Are you keeping score America? Chris Matthews has an entire show devoted to the possible criminal indictment of a sitting vice president. On that show he has six guests. Four of them are hardcore backers of the vice president, defending him the entire time on the show, trying to convince America that there is no fire here, nothing to see, move along. The remaining two, are moderate at best and not ONE even takes the side that maybe, just maybe when there is smoke, there could be fire. What a sham. Chris Matthews should be ashamed of himself. He allowed Stephen Hayes to lie and say this story is all about just a difference of opinion about the war. Nonsense. He then allowed Hayes to further lie and say that everything Wilson initially said was proven to be demonstrably wrong. This is just ridiculous. Everything Joe Wilson said has been proven to be absolutely true. This is what happens when you allow a known liar to pretend to be some kind of journalistic expert and present it to America as news.

The fact is that the true scandal in this story was barely touched by the king of softball. The true scandal is that someone created forged documents in an attempt to push this country into war. These documents were exposed by Wilson yet stayed in the Bush state of the union address. There are 2,000 dead Americans who now have died for what we know were lies. Who was selling those lies? Dick Cheney. The intelligence community was not buying the WMD angles being attributed to Saddam at this time. Who was vehemently pushing the intel community to accept the false versions of the intel? Dick Cheney. One of the confirmed leakers of Valerie Plame's identity has been confirmed to be Scooter Libby. Scooter Libby is the chief of staff for whom? Dick Cheney. The greatest potential to damage the push toward war was the Wilson discrediting of the Niger story. Without the potential of nuclear weapons, Saddam would not appear nearly as scary. Is this conspiracy too difficult for people to put together?

I do not need an hour of fake news with fake objective opinions, to make my mind up. I smell smoke. I smell a heck of a lot of smoke. I was taught that where there is smoke, there usually is fire. I can only assume that if Chris Matthews needed to pretend for an hour that six people telling America that Dick Cheney is Mother Theresa passes for a news program that the powers that be must be awful scared. Good. This story is not about Joe Wilson. It is not even about Valerie Plame. It is about the precious rule of law that republicans smacked us in the head with during the partisan Clinton impeachment hearings. It is about more than the rule of law though. It is about making sure no one is above that rule of law. Maybe Dick Cheney is a heck of a guy. Maybe he befriends small woodland creatures and always recycles. I really don't care. If he broke the law he needs to be held accountable. No matter how hard the King of Softball and his gang of apologists might try to tell me it is not a big deal.
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Anthony Wade, a contributing writer to, is dedicated to educating the populace to the lies and abuses of the government. He is a 53-year-old independent writer from New York with political commentary articles seen on multiple (more...)

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